Westminster Business News: Blue Bistro, Sideways Cafe, Firehouse Subs and More

Coming, going and under new management -- Patch highlights business happenings in the Westminster area.

New Business

Blue Bistro & Catering took over the former A Gourmet Affair deli. Blue Bistro co-owner Lori Javier (yes, the wife of Rafael Javier who owns Rafael's on Main Street) said they intend to keep some of the old deli favorites but add new menu items as well as a bistro-style dinner on weekends and catering services.

Firehouse Subs, a national chain with a commitment to supporting the local fire department, is open at 625 Baltimore Blvd, near Petsmart.

The Sideways Cafe is now open in what used to be Tuscany Cafe at 84 East Main St. According to its website, The Sideways Cafe offers a full menu of food using locally grown produce and ingredients in addition to a full bar.

Tobacco and Sundries Shop opened next to Wine Me Up! on Main Street.


Frisco Family Pub in the Westminster Shopping Center closed in late December after 34 years in operation. Owner Cheryl Lawson said business has been inconsistent in the last few years.

New Location

Race Pace Bicycles has moved from its location on Baltimore Blvd to the downtown area at 1 Railroad Ave (Rt. 27 and Main Street behind Johansson's).

Carroll Gymnastics has moved from 4 Seasons Sports Complex in Hampstead to 5 Center Street, formerly East End Athletic Club.

New Ownership

The former Westminster Cigar Company is now Davidus Cigars, 23 E. Main St.


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Wendy Raith January 23, 2013 at 01:15 PM
Great information. Thank you!
David from VoxPop January 23, 2013 at 01:22 PM
I sure hope that the Blue Bistro has a different kitchen staff from Rafael's. after three miserable experiences in a row (including overlooked mussels and undercooked burgers), my family and I will never, ever go back to Rafael's for dinner. Karaoke maybe, but not food.
RJ Teich January 23, 2013 at 02:08 PM
GREAT food!! EXCELLENT friendly staff; TRY Firehouse Sub!!
Kiki bowman January 23, 2013 at 05:54 PM
I love the food at Rafael's. best burgers in town !!!!!! I'd go to the deli mainly because of Rafael's food!!
David from VoxPop January 23, 2013 at 06:24 PM
I don't know, my friend. I was a pretty loyal fan of that restaurant for a while, and I really love the staff there, but we kept having bad experiences, with the burger night one being the last. Our wonderful server--a nice Latino man whose name I have regrettably forgotten--was so embarrassed he bought our dinner (we tipped him the value of the cheque plus 20 per cent). I love Rafael's, and I continue to meet my friends there for drinks at the bar, but my confidence in their kitchen has been entirely shaken!
Tom Gilbert January 23, 2013 at 07:41 PM
try Firehouse subs....you'll love it !
Rafael Javier January 23, 2013 at 08:09 PM
Good afternoon David, I am sorry to hear about your recent visits to the restaurant. We strive to provide the best value & service to our clients on a daily basis. I would like to speak with you when you have a moment, can you please call me at the restaurant, 410-840-1919. Once again, on behalf of Rafael's Restaurant & the entire staff, please accept my sincere apology for your unfortunate experiences.
Rafael Javier January 23, 2013 at 08:11 PM
Good afternoon Kiki, thank you for the positive feedback & patronage. Have a nice warm day.
Peggie Kozo January 24, 2013 at 02:16 PM
I hope Blue Bistro keeps the shrimp salad and broccoli salad. They are the best in town.
Rafael Javier January 24, 2013 at 07:28 PM
Hi Peggie, thanks for the nice comments, I will inform Lori & the girls about ur request. Have a nice warm day.
Mike Jordan January 30, 2013 at 01:42 AM
Don't forget about Westminster based Critical Response Management. Our groundbreaking new workshop "Mental Health First Aid" is a basic first aid class for every citizen on the topic of mental illness. This is what you NEED to know in today's society. Great for Individuals, parents, employers and HR professionals. To be held at McDaniel College on Feb 21 & 22 www.CRMsaves.com/MHFA for more information.
Debra Haugh April 14, 2013 at 12:41 PM
Everyone should try Blue Bistro Deli & catering. It is located in the shopping center where Starry Night Bakery is. You can get a good lunch and on Fri. & Sat. evenings they have a dinner menu.The dinner is excellent and the staff is very friendly. Chef Melissa puts a personal touch on everything she makes and strives to make her customers happy. I ate there last night and had the best crab soup. Also you can bring your own beer and wine. They will keep it chilled for you and no corkage fee for wine.
Debra Haugh April 14, 2013 at 12:48 PM
Peggie, if you like the lunch menu at Blue Bistro Deli you should come in on Fri & Sat evenings for dinner. I have been there 4 times since they started serving dinner and I am always pleased.


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